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Natural Connections

Modern life in Scotland is increasingly busy. The connections our ancestors had with nature and the land are being lost. As leisure time shrinks, or is filled with hi-tech experiences, opportunities to experience nature become fewer. And yet it is possible to connect with nature on a day to day basis. All around us, the great web of life continues to hold its shape, and nature continues its eternal cycles. Keep looking, listening, smelling, touching - and keep experiencing natural connections.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Took full advantage of the Citylink "Go anywhere in Scotland for £2" offer and spent a really good day walking in Rothiemurchus Forest. Highlights of a cold, bright day were nearly 200 Greylag Geese in fields at Doune Farm, two Goldeneye on Loch an Eilein, a Treecreeper next to the path up Ord Ban and over 200 Jackdaws roosting on the roof of the MacDonald Hotel. It was also nice to have the whole walk up and down Ord Ban to myself. The views from up there are excellent. Plant life is remarkable for such a small hill with Birch woodland around the base, Heather covering most of the upper third and a montane flora (clubmoss, Dwarf Willow etc) around the very top.
Impressions of Strathspey in February:
(1) Its cold and windy.
(2) The birds have begun to sing (I had Great Tit, Blue Tit, Coal Tit, Chaffinch, Greenfinch, Collared Dove, Woodpigeon, Robin and Mistle Thrush).
(3) There are plenty of animals being farmed in the area (Cattle at Achnagoichan and Tulloch Farm, and Sheep at Tulloch Farm and Whitewell Croft).
(4) Many of the isolated cottages are occupied (judging by the number with smoke coming from their chimneys). I had assumed they were all second homes.

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